More Energy than Sense
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: 155 miles north of Spokane
Bikes: Thorn Sherpa, Co-Motion Custom Road, Salsa Fargo, Mercian King of Mercia and Motobecane Fantom Pro 29er
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I also don't like restricting myself to itineraries and having to make reservations. I have done a lot of touring camping on both and only made one reservation and that was at Moran St Park on Orcas.
You are making me go back in time but this is what I remember. It's been about 10 years since I have been to Galiano, but back then we used to camp at Dionisio Provincial park. There was a dispute over the access road so it was turned into a marine park. But, it was pretty easy to walk your bike around the gate and into paradise. It is a magical place. I just checked and looks like it is still a Marine Park. The person above is referring to Montague Harbor Provincial Park and there is open camping where you can usually find a spot if not always. Montague is also an excellent spot (if Dionisio isn't accessible).
On Salt Spring Island there is Ruckle Provincial Park which is also on the water and another fantastic spot. I know it's popular so you might need reservations here.
I remember on Mayne Island there was a B and B that allowed camping in their yard as well as a place that rented Kyaks that did the same.
Regarding the San Juans, the most popular campgrounds would be Spencer Spit on Lopez, Moran on Orcas and San Juan County Park on San Juan. Moran isn't large and fills up even midweek during the summer. It's beautiful and might be worth a reservation. Maybe make it your first stop?? But if it is full, Doe Bay Resort isn't too far away and they at least used to offer camping w/ a clothing optional hot tub and sauna. This would actually be my first choice. They have changed owners a lot over the years so can't say what's happening now but a quick search will tell you. The tent sight used to be on a point over looking the water.
Personally, I don't think reservations are necessary except for Ruckles and Moran. If your first choice is full, you should be able to find something else like a private campground (although there aren't a lot of private ones. The only one that comes to mind is Lakedale on San Juan).
I have to say that I was on San Juan Is a couple weeks ago and I can't believe how busy it is there now. Even mid week in the off season there was lot of traffic. Unless you have more time than you know what to do with, you won't miss much by skipping San Juan. The consensus of my friends and I is, if we have the time, we spend it in the Gulf Islands. If not, then we go to the San Juans. The Gulf Islands were a lot less developed.
If you need more info, let me know.
Last edited by aroundoz; 05-02-07 at 10:26 AM.